For those who have been keenly following the NBA, you must have noticed the Memphis Grizzlies performance in the recent seasons. Their remarkable upset in the previous season over the top seeded San Antonio Spurs, turned many heads. Plus they had a neck-to-neck encounter with the Los Angeles Clippers in this season’s playoff, which they eventually lost 3-4, has opened up a new era in the franchise.
The Grizzlies had drafted the current LA Laker, Pau Gasol in the year 2001, who pretty much carried the team on his back with Shane Battier. Pau Gasol had a major impact on the team which is clearly shown in the franchise’s records :
Career statistical leaders
- Games–Pau Gasol (471)
- Minutes Played–Pau Gasol (16,727)
- Field Goals Made–Pau Gasol (3,286)
- Field Goals Attempted–Pau Gasol (6,459)
- 3-Point Field Goals Made–Chris Ford (737)
- 3-Point Field Goals Attempted–Mike Miller (1,778)
- Free Throws Made–Pau Gasol (2,284)
- Free Throws Attempted–Pau Gasol (3,130)
- Offensive Rebounds–Pau Gasol (1,187)
- Defensive Rebounds–Pau Gasol (2,864)
- Total Rebounds–Pau Gasol (4,051)
- Assists–Jason Williams (2,041)
- Steals–Rudy Gay (535)
- Blocked Shots–Pau Gasol (868)
- Turnovers–Pau Gasol (1,224)
- Personal Fouls–Bryant Reeves (1,365)
- Points–Pau Gasol (8,872)
Come 2008,the grizzlies traded Pau for Kwame Brown, Javaris Crittenton, Aaron Mackie and rights to Marc Gasol (Pau’s younger brother). The next season, the grizzlies also acquired Zack Randolph, who played at an All-Star level. With the addition of a tremendous talent as Rudy Gay and combined with the natural skills of Marc Gasol, the Grizzlies improved their performance significantly. They were looking in contention for the 2009-10 season play-offs, but finished the season on a low ly 10th place.
After playing in their natural “grit and grind” way, they reached the playoffs after a gap of five seasons in 2010-11. The team was seeded 6th in the league but shockingly, they grasped their first playoff victory by a win over the top seeded Spurs on the road. The franchise then went on to register their first ever series win in game 6, winning the series 4-2. It was the first time ever that an 8th seeded team had defeated a 1st seeded team. The team then lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder, that too in the 7th game of the series, ending their astonishing run.
The Grizzlies again reached the post-season this year, losing to the Clippers in seven games.
The Grizzlies are definitely a talented and a well-knit group and for all those Grizzly fans out there, you all have a reason to CHEER your team next season.